Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- A tribe of orchids, characterized by a single posterior opercular anther, its cells almost always confluent at maturity, and closely incumbent above a horizontal rostellum, to which the waxy pollen-masses are affixed by a small thick or scale-like gland, which is often prolonged into a distinct caulicle or stalk. It includes about 140 genera, classed in 8 tribes, the types of which are the genera Eulophium, Cymbidium, Cyrtopodium, Stanhopea, Maxillaria, Oncidium, Sarcanthus, and Notylia. These genera alone include over 530 tropical species, and are all, except perhaps the first and last, highly prized in cultivation. The Notylieæ (or Podochileæ) are aberrant in their erect rostellum, and are thus transitional to the tribe Neoltieæ. The two globose or oblong pollen-masses, each sometimes bisected, are very readily removed by insect or artificial aid, and insure cross-fertilization. The genera are nearly all epiphytic. They often produce pseudo-bulbs, but not tubers;.their stems are erect, or reduced to a creeping rootstock adhering to trees or stones; their inflorescence is usually lateral, very rarely, as in
Cyrtopodium, a terminal raceme. The flowers are commonly large and handsome, many of the most valuable among orchids belonging here, as Aërides, Miltonia, Saccolabium, Odontoglossum, Phalænopsis, Zygopetalum, Lycaste, Catasetum, and Peristeria. See cut under Phalænopsis.
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